Friday, October 5, 2007

[G] More types of gadgets for iGoogle

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Official Google Blog: More types of gadgets for iGoogle



Google Desktop lets you not only search your computer easily, but you can also personalize your desktop. From cultivating a virtual potted plant, to reading the latest news and checking the weather forecast, you can customize your desktop with a variety of gadgets and a sidebar. Some of you have asked if you can also put gadgets on iGoogle homepages next to your other gadgets. And starting today, the answer is yes.

With Google Desktop 5.5 Beta, you can you now embed Google Desktop Gadgets right into your iGoogle homepage. Gadgets on an iGoogle homepage can have more advanced functionality, such as playing music from your computer. You can find them alongside other gadgets in the iGoogle Content Directory. We've also improved some of the other features; such as better looking Quick Search Box, support for multiple copies of a gadget, and improved Outlook search functionality. Read more on the Google Desktop Blog and check out these gadgets you can now add to your iGoogle homepage.

URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2007/10/more-types-of-gadgets-for-igoogle.html

[G] iGoogle meets Desktop gadgets

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Inside Google Desktop: iGoogle meets Desktop gadgets



We've often asked ourselves why Google Desktop Gadgets are confined to just the desktop and sidebar. With Google Desktop 5.5 Beta, we've decided to change that. In addition to improved Outlook search functionality, Google Desktop now lets you run Desktop gadgets on your iGoogle homepage. And that means you can check your wireless signal, grow a beautiful plant, or play music right from iGoogle.


The process for adding Desktop gadgets to your iGoogle homepage is simple. Just surf over to the iGoogle Content Directory and find the gadgets you want to add -- for example, try adding the media player gadget by clicking on the "Add it now" button on this page. If you already have Desktop 5.5 installed, you'll get the gadget without having to do anything more. If you don't, you'll be offered a streamlined Google Desktop with only the gadget functionality enabled. You can decide later whether you want to try out some of the other great features of Google Desktop, such as searching the contents of files, emails and web history.

With Desktop 5.5, you can also have multiple instances of a gadget on your desktop. Simply open up the "Add gadgets" menu and choose to add an existing gadget again. Also, make sure to press the Ctrl button twice to check out the svelte new look of the Quick Search Box.

Additionally, we've updated the gadgets button, which you can use to quickly see all your new gadgets!


As always, please let us know what you think.

URL: http://googledesktop.blogspot.com/2007/10/igoogle-meets-desktop-gadgets.html

[G] Optimizing Instablogs

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Inside AdSense: Optimizing Instablogs

Instablogs is a blog network that publishes more than 200 posts a day on 136 blogs spanning 16 niche channels, including luxury gadgets blog Bornrich and technology blog Gizmowatch. With 200+ bloggers blogging from all over the world, Instablogs has around 2 million unique visitors per month.

Instablogs co-founder Ankit Maheshwari tells us that AdSense works well with each blog's unique content. "Since our blogs are very niche-oriented, it's tough for us to sell our inventory directly to advertisers on blogs with less than 30,000 page views per month," he says. "AdSense's high CPC offering and huge advertiser database can help monetize the page views on any site irrespective of its size."

Recently Ankit began to experiment with AdSense optimization. Although he was doubtful of the results, he tried a few minor tweaks on his site, such as opting in to displaying image ads and adding link units to the top of his pages. He also used information from his custom channels to determine the ad unit with the highest CTR on his pages – he then placed this ad unit first in the HTML source of each page. After a week of testing these changes, Ankit found that revenue nearly doubled. While AdSense revenue used to comprise 15% of the company's advertising revenue, since optimizing it's increased to 25%.

Despite the success of his first optimization, Ankit has found that there isn't one standard layout or ad format that is optimal for all of his pages. He says, "We've seen in many blogs that a few ad types perform better in different sections. For example, the large rectangle performs 70% better on the permalink pages of our Tattoo blog, while skyscrapers perform best on all other pages. At the same time, banner ads have performed really well on our Parenting blog."

Today, Ankit continues to make small changes and frequently tests new layouts based on his custom channel data. He feels that "custom channels are not only a useful feature, but also the most important feature in the entire AdSense program for publishers."


URL: http://adsense.blogspot.com/2007/10/optimizing-instablogs.html

[G] Where in the world is... (Answers)

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Google LatLong: Where in the world is... (Answers)

Posted by Matt Manolides, GIS Specialist

Great job figuring out the answers to all the clues, I am always impressed at how people scattered all across the globe team up to solve these riddles.

1) I don't mean to "flatter," but this remote Northwestern cape is very beautiful.
- Cape Flattery, WA
2) You can now explore the ruins of this ancient Mayan city, first discovered in 1934.
- Becan, Mexico (it's a little cloudy, but you can still see plenty of ruins)

3) This small Peruvian village attracts many tourists each year for the Incan ruins atop nearby hills.
- Pisac, Peru
4) This city claims to be the southernmost city in the world, with approximately 64,000 residents.
- Ushuaia, Agentina
5) Home of the Russian Pacific Fleet, this city is also Russia's largest Pacific coast harbor.
- Vladivostock, Russia

6) Named after Saint Irene, though sometimes referred to as Thera, this island is a popular Greek tourist destination.
- Santorini, Greece
7) The Trojan horse from the 2004 movie Troy is visible in this city.
- Çanakkale, Turkey

8) This city is the second most populated metropolitan area in Africa, second to Cairo.
- Lagos, Nigeria
9) For better or for worse, the testing done at this site changed the world forever. In 1965 it was declared a U.S. National Historic Landmark.
- Trinity Site, White Sands Missile Range - New Mexico
10) Odessos was the original name of this large city, then a trading colony.
- Varna, Bulgaria
11) This was the first port on the Shandong peninsula to be opened to the west in the 1800s.
- Penglai City, China


Remember, this was only a small sampling, there's lots of new imagery out there to discover.

URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2007/10/where-in-world-is-answers_05.html

Thursday, October 4, 2007

[G] 3 short weeks

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Official Google Blog: 3 short weeks



Three weeks ago today was the official close of Google's acquisition of Postini -- and what a three weeks it's been. "Official close" meant that integration work could legally begin, and so the Google Apps team and Postini team have been burning the midnight oil to get our services integrated. Now, Google Apps customers, Postini customers and everyone else can see the results.

Postini security and compliance capabilities are officially part of Google Apps Premier Edition. Google Apps customers get these services for free. Postini customers get an extended trial period for Apps. New customers can chose their entry point: Apps (including Postini security and compliance) or any of the standalone Postini services.

The benefits of software as a service are numerous -- that's why we're seeing a huge interest in Apps. Businesses of all sizes are asking for these services, and we need to help customers embrace Apps without loss of features, functions, or security. I'm proud that Postini plays a role in this offering.

Postini was founded in 1999 with the vision of transforming how IT organizations consumed security and compliance products. We recognized the service delivery model brings huge leverage, and 36,000 customers around the world validated that vision. Google Enterprise is now scaling that vision. No one knows what the next three weeks will bring, but we're all excited to be part of it.

URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2007/10/3-short-weeks.html

[G] DonorsChoose and your blog

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Blogger Buzz: DonorsChoose and your blog

From the Google Blog, a post you should all check out:
When it comes to philanthropy, everyone's got something different to give – some people have money, others have time, and bloggers have devoted readers. The creative folks at DonorsChoose have a few ideas about how bloggers can help students and teachers.

In case you're not familiar with DonorsChoose, it's a site where teachers post needs they have for their classrooms, and donors fund those projects directly. If you've got a blog, a website, or even an email account, you can help by creating what's called a challenge. Just pick some of your favorite projects and challenge your family, friends, and readers to fund them. If you've got a Blogger account, it's easy to add your challenge to your blog in just a few clicks.

To support their recent expansion to schools all across the U.S., the DonorsChoose team is holding a little competition, keeping track of which bloggers and webmasters drive the most funding to schools.

We think this is a cool idea, so we want to help it succeed. We're going to reward the winning bloggers with exactly what they gave to DonorsChoose, students, and teachers: traffic. The competition will remain open until the end of October - we'll then take a look to see who has helped raise the most money in each of the eight DonorsChoose challenge categories. We'll post links to the winners' blogs here, and we'll also throw in a $500 gift certificate for each winner to spend on DonorsChoose.

So here's our challenge to you: go create a challenge on DonorsChoose.

URL: http://buzz.blogger.com/2007/10/donorschoose-and-your-blog.html

[G] AdWords Ads: What's your location?

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Inside AdWords: AdWords Ads: What's your location?

Lately we've received some inquiries about the locations that are often displayed beneath the last line of text in AdWords ads. Here's some helpful information that explains when we display locations, and how we determine what to display.

How'd that get there?

When you use regional targeting in your campaigns, Google users searching from your targeted areas will see the city or region name (whichever is more specific) displayed directly beneath your ad. This alerts users that your product or service may be especially relevant to them due to your proximity, and it helps you reach local users. Check out this example ad:



We show the name of the region or city based on the Internet Protocol (IP) address of the user. For example, if you target both Madrid and Barcelona, a user located in Madrid sees the word 'Madrid.' A user in Barcelona sees 'Barcelona.'

How do I run ads that don't display locations?

If you're using regional targeting, a location will always be displayed to users searching from your targeted region. So, if you'd like to run ads without a location, try creating a similar country- and territory-targeted campaign, using region-specific keywords and ad text. This is a great way to reach other qualified users who might not be physically located in your targeted area.

Visit the Targeting by Location section of our help center to learn more about targeting your campaigns.


URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2007/10/adwords-ads-whats-your-location.html

[G] Now Playing: The Google Maps Video Tour

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Google LatLong: Now Playing: The Google Maps Video Tour

Posted by Jess Lee, Product Manager, Google Maps

Over the past few months we've put together some fun YouTube videos to help educate people about features in Google Maps, like Street View and our mapmaking tools.

Now, you can learn about all of these features in one place on the Google Maps Video Tour page.

We've also added a brand-new Getting Started video that explains the basics. It's perfect for educating beginner users, like the aunt who always calls you for tech support help.




Let us know what you think of the video by leaving some comments on YouTube. We'd love to hear from you.


URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2007/10/now-playing-google-maps-video-tour.html

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

[G] Your next coffee table e-book

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Google Analytics Blog: Your next coffee table e-book

Learning about Google Analytics just got easier with the recent release of Justin Cutroni's new e-book, Google Analytics Shortcut published by O'Reilly Media. The downloadable e-book is separated into sections and offers advice for users of all skill levels, starting with "Getting Setup Correct," and moving on to more advanced tips and advice on avoiding configuration mistakes.

Justin is a Google Analytics Authorized Consultant with Epikone. I consider Justin to be a trusted source and have consulted him on a number of complex web analytics issues. He always impresses me with his industry knowledge and how many subtle details he knows about Google Analytics. Justin plans to update his book twice a year and free downloads of updated material will be available to everyone who has purchased the book so that as we continue to roll out new features and capabilities, Google Analytics Shortcut will remain up-to-date.


URL: http://analytics.blogspot.com/2007/10/your-next-coffee-table-e-book.html

[G] Google Reader: Out of Labs

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Official Gmail Blog: Google Reader: Out of Labs



You may have noticed that Google Reader recently parted ways with Google Labs. If you're not familiar with Reader, it's Google's feed aggregator. Think of it as your inbox for the web: just subscribe to the news sites, blogs, or videos you want to follow. You can read all the updates in one place -- there's no need to visit 20 different sites to get all this stuff. To see how it works, try subscribing to this blog by clicking on the "Site Feed" link in the on the right-hand side. You'll find similar links on most blogs, and many news sites too. For further explanation about why feed readers are so great, watch RSS in Plain English:


So why has Reader graduated from Google Labs? There have been a bunch of feature updates in recent months. Reader now has offline access using Google Gears, a new search tool, it's available in 10 languages, and will show you trends about your reading and subscribing habits. There's even a version of Reader for the Nintendo Wii. (But, really, we found the chemistry with Labs just wasn't there anymore.)

URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2007/10/google-reader-out-of-labs.html

[G] Pro-consumer spectrum auction rules at risk at the FCC?

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Google Public Policy Blog: Pro-consumer spectrum auction rules at risk at the FCC?



When the FCC in late July voted to adopt its spectrum band plan and license conditions for the upcoming 700 MHz auction, it was natural to assume that was the end of the regulatory story. To the contrary, it seems that a "final" vote by a federal government agency is merely the beginning of a new phase in the process.

Just three weeks ago, Verizon filed a lawsuit against the FCC, seeking to overturn the FCC's attempt to bring Internet-style consumer choice via the 700 MHz auction. In a recent court filing, Verizon has also threatened to have next January's auction itself halted unless the consumer choice provisions are eliminated. Now come various news reports suggesting that Verizon is lobbying behind the scenes (and in apparent violation of FCC rules) to once again convince the FCC to water down key aspects of the pro-consumer rule provisions.

As far as we can tell, Verizon appears to be arguing that two of the key provisions in the auction rules designed to spur competition -- the requirements for open devices and open applications -- should not apply to a licensee's own devices that use this block of 700 MHz spectrum. Their theory is that so long as "unlocked" devices (those that can be configured to work with any network) are theoretically available to consumers through other means, the winning bidder in the auction shouldn't be required to make its devices open as well.

From our perspective, this view ignores the realities of the U.S. wireless market, where some 95 percent of handsets are sold in retail stores run by the large carriers. More to the point, it is simply contrary to what the FCC's new rules actually say. Specifically, Rule 27.16(b) states that licensees

"shall not deny, limit, or restrict the ability of their customers to use the devices and applications of their choice…"

Similarly, the "handset locking prohibited rule" states explicitly that

"no licensee may disable features on handsets it provides to customers…."

Needless to say, Verizon's attempt to change the reading of this rules language would seriously undermine the promise of consumers seeking more choices of wireless providers and services. Earlier this week, we sent a letter to the FCC urging the agency to resist this late-proposed rule change.

We are still carefully analyzing whether and how we might participate in the upcoming auction. However, if we do end up bidding and ultimately win the spectrum in question, we would ensure that consumers have the right to decide which devices and applications they want to use on our network. We would also encourage third party software applications -- even those that compete directly with our own services -- on the theory that users deserve the right to pick and choose the programs they want to use online.

We think the Internet offers the optimal model for what best serves the interests of all consumers. To that end, we hope the FCC sticks to its guns as it tries to introduce the open ethos of the 'Net to a small segment of the closed wireless world.

URL: http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2007/10/pro-consumer-spectrum-auction-rules-at.html

[G] Google Transit Graduates from Labs

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Google LatLong: Google Transit Graduates from Labs

Posted by Christoph Oehler, Product Manager

It may be back-to-school season, but Google Transit has just graduated from Google Labs! We're excited to say it's now a fully integrated feature in Google Maps. This means that when you look up directions for areas where we have transit coverage you'll now have the option of seeing how to get there using public transportation.

Let's say you live in Mountain View and want to head over to Great America amusement park . What do you do? First, buy some tickets. Then, go to Google Maps to get directions to the arena. You'll notice we kept driving directions as the default, but if you look at the top of the panel, you'll see a new option to 'Take Public Transit.' You can select the time you'd like to depart or arrive (under 'Options') and choose from a few alternate routes. Also, in some areas, we even give you the ability to compare the cost of taking public transit with the cost of driving.


In looking at this example, the answer is pretty clear: public transit is cheaper, probably faster since you know you'll have to sit in some rush-hour traffic if you drive, and, of course, more environmentally friendly.

If you're already an old hand at using Google Transit, don't worry. The main Google Transit page, will still be in place. You can use that page to see which transit agencies are currently within our coverage areas. In the past few weeks alone, we've added Bay Area Rapid Transit (San Francisco Bay Area), Santa Clara (CA) Valley Transportation Authority, and Hampton Roads (VA) Transit - among many others. (If you're going to Japan or China, we've got you covered! ). We're still working hard to make Google Transit useful for as many people as possible, and we'll keep you posted as we add new regions. And if you happen to be a transit agency reading this, you can find out here how to take part.

URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2007/10/google-transit-graduates-from-labs.html

[G] New Western Union payment method

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Inside AdSense: New Western Union payment method

We're excited to tell you that we're offering a new payment method for some countries. If you're located in Argentina, Chile, China (Mainland), Colombia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines, or Romania, you can now sign up for Western Union Quick Cash, a new form of payment that lets you receive your AdSense payments in cash using the worldwide Western Union money transfer service. Payments will be available for pickup at your local Western Union agent the day after they are issued, according to our normal payment schedule.

It's free to receive your AdSense payments by Western Union; you'll no longer need to wait for a check to arrive in the mail. this choice can also cut down on bank fees and long clearing times associated with depositing checks.

Before you sign up, please keep these important points in mind:
  • As mentioned above, Western Union Quick Cash is only available in Argentina, Chile, China (Mainland), Colombia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines, and Romania. We'll be sure to let you know if we're able to offer new payment options to additional publishers.

  • This payment method is currently only available to individual payee names; we can't offer it to businesses.

  • You'll need to bring your government-issued ID to pick up your payment, so please make sure that your AdSense account payee name exactly matches that of your ID. Please contact us if you need to update the payee name in your account.

  • Payments must be picked up within 35 days of issuance or they will expire. If this happens, a payment hold will be placed on your AdSense account and the payment will be credited back to your account.

  • Payments will be made in US dollars, but depending on your local Western Union agent, they may be picked up in your local currency.
If you're ready to begin receiving your AdSense payments by Western Union Quick Cash, just follow these instructions. If you have additional questions before getting started, please review the information in our Help Center.


URL: http://adsense.blogspot.com/2007/10/new-western-union-payment-method.html

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

[G] Latest AdWords Newsletters: Tech B2B and Entertainment & Media Industry

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Inside AdWords: Latest AdWords Newsletters: Tech B2B and Entertainment & Media Industry

We've got two new resources for advertisers: the latest edition of the AdWords Tech B2B Industry Newsletter and the brand new AdWords Entertainment & Media Industry Newsletter.

In the latest issue of the Tech B2B Industry Newsletter, you'll find tips for connecting with small businesses and ways to expand your reach using Google's content network and Google Print Ads. Also, be sure to stop by the newly revamped Tech B2B Industry Knowledge Center
for more tips, guides, and industry news.

The first issue of the Entertainment & Media Industry Newsletter features stats about trends affecting online entertainment and media, as well as industry-specific optimization tips to help you apply this knowledge. It also covers how you can use Google's content network and Google Audio Ads and Print Ads to reach a greater audience.

You can sign up to receive AdWords newsletters via email through your AdWords account.


URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2007/10/latest-adwords-newsletters-tech-b2b-and.html

[G] Something old, something new

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Official Google Checkout Blog: Something old, something new




As summer weddings give way to the holiday shopping season, we're excited to let you know that two more great retailers are offering Google Checkout services in the U.K.

Are you interested in buying something dazzling for your loved one, like a piece of jewelry? You can now shop at Goldsmiths, which opened its first store in Newcastle in 1778 and is Britain's largest jeweler today, and purchase using Google Checkout. In fact, it's the longest-trading retailer to offer Google Checkout to online customers.

Or perhaps you'd like to stay in touch with friends and family during the giving season. In that case, use Google Checkout on Vodafone. Vodafone UK is part of the world's leading international mobile telecommunications group and offers a wide range of voice and data communications to help customers make the most of their time.

As the Checkout family grows, we'll continue to help innovative, quality retailers -- whether they've been around for months, decades, or centuries -- connect with their customers. And don't forget that our summer promo is still going strong in the U.K.

URL: http://googlecheckout.blogspot.com/2007/10/something-old-something-new.html

[G] Ready for our close-up

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Google Photos Blog: Ready for our close-up



A picture is worth a thousand words, but sometimes there's still more to say. That's why I'm happy to introduce our new Google Photos Blog. We'll be using this space to post feature updates, photography tips, and (of course) some of our favorite photo albums, all of which will keep you current with the latest developments from the Picasa team.

As you might've guessed from the name of this blog, our Santa Monica team works on more than just Picasa and Picasa Web Albums -- we're responsible for a variety of photo-related technology here at Google, such as hosting Blogger's image-uploading infrastructure, developing Orkut's photo picker, and creating Mapplets for browsing geotagged photos inside Google Maps.

I myself am a newcomer to this team; I joined a few months ago as a transfer from our London office. It's been an exciting move -- partly because we have some really-neat photo products in development, and partly because sunny Southern California is where I grew up. Seeing as how my new job is all about helping you organize and share your photos, I thought I'd start by posting a few pictures of my own from my time in England.

We hope you'll visit us often for more visual news and notes!

image of Cambridge sign

URL: http://googlephotos.blogspot.com/2007/09/posted-by-jason-cook-product-marketing_28.html

[G] Where in the world is...

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Google LatLong: Where in the world is...



Greetings Earthlings,

Today we've published a significant amount of new or updated 60cm satellite imagery for Google Earth, with the Google Maps update to follow shortly. Much of this imagery is concentrated in the U.S., Latin America, Sub-Saharan Africa, India, China, Australia and New Zealand. I encourage everyone to go exploring -- you never know what you might find.

To help you get started, we've put together some clues pointing to interesting areas where we now have high-resolution imagery.

1) I don't mean to "flatter," but this remote Northwestern cape is very beautiful.
2) You can now explore the ruins of this ancient Mayan city, first discovered in 1934.
3) This small Peruvian village attracts many tourists each year for the Incan ruins atop nearby hills.
4) This city claims to be the southernmost city in the world, with approximately 64,000 residents.
5) Home of the Russian Pacific Fleet, this city is also Russia's largest Pacific coast harbor.
6) Named after Saint Irene, though sometimes referred to as Thera, this island is a popular Greek tourist destination.
7) The Trojan horse from the 2004 movie Troy is visible in this city.
8) This city is the second most populated metropolitan area in Africa, second to Cairo.
9) For better or for worse, the testing done at this site changed the world forever. In 1965 it was declared a U.S. National Historic Landmark.
10) Odessos was the original name of this large city, then a trading colony.
11) This was the first port on the Shandong peninsula to be opened to the west in the 1800s.


The imagery we're publishing today touches approximately 130 different countries, so there's plenty out there to discover!

URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2007/09/where-in-world-is.html

Monday, October 1, 2007

[G] ROI: why it matters and how to track it -- part 3 of 3

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Inside AdWords: ROI: why it matters and how to track it -- part 3 of 3

In part two of this series, Fred Vallaeys, Product Evangelist for AdWords, discussed how to set up the conversion tracking feature available in every Standard Edition AdWords account -- and how to use conversion tracking information to track your ROI. Today, in the final installment of the series, Fred is back with tips on how to start using that ROI data to your advantage.

Once you have a week's worth or more of conversion tracking data, you should have enough information in your reports to start adjusting your bids to improve your ROI. Here are two strategies to improve bids using your new data.

When ROI is less than 100%

Using the type of report I described last week, sort the data on the "Value / Cost" column (which is your ROI expressed as a percentage) and look for keywords that have a negative ROI (i.e. less than 100%), but enough clicks that you'd reasonably expect some conversions to have happened. These are keywords for which your advertising costs exceed your profits, so your bids for these keywords may be set too high. (Please see the Notes section near the bottom of the post for further discussion on why I say 'may' here.)

In most cases, you should lower the bids for keywords with ROI less than 100% to the amount in the "Value / Click" column from the report. The "Value / Click" amount reflects how much profit you gain per click, so if you set your maximum CPC to this amount and the performance remains consistent, you will at least break even on these keywords.

When ROI is more than 100%

For keywords that have a positive ROI (i.e. greater than 100%), consider increasing your maximum bid -- but not higher than the amount in the "Value / Click" column. By increasing your bid, your ROI will decrease but you may end up making a greater total profit because you're getting more clicks when your ad moves to a higher average position.

Consider the hypothetical situation shown in the table below. To begin with, your max CPC of $1.00 puts you in position 6.0 on average and your ROI is 200%. Then, suppose there are two possible scenarios when you raise your max CPC by $0.20 to $1.20 to improve your average position to 5.0; in scenario A, the higher position gets you 10 extra clicks and in scenario B, you get 15 additional clicks.

Because you're paying more for every click, your ROI decreases and you need more clicks to make the same profit as before. As you can see, in scenario A, your net profit has declined from $50 to $48 so you should keep the old bid. In scenario B, your net profit has increased from $50 to $52 so you should keep the increased bid and experiment with raising it even further.


Avg. CPCValue / Cost (ROI)Value / ClickAvg. PositionClicksCostTotal ValueNet Profit
Current$1.00200%$2.006.050$50$100$50
Scenario A$1.20166%$2.005.060$72$120$48
Scenario B$1.20166%$2.005.065$78$130$52

About this table:
Cost = Avg. CPC multiplied by Total Clicks
Total Value = "Value / Click" multiplied by Total Clicks
Net Profit = Total Value minus Total Cost
Note that only the "Net Profit" column is something you have to calculate. All other columns are available in AdWords reports.


If your competitors aren't looking at ROI data when setting bids, they won't know which keywords are costing too much, nor which keywords could have delivered greater profits in a higher position. Now that you've got the data to see the complete picture and make smarter bidding decisions, you'll have an edge over competitors who are bidding without being fully informed.

In addition, enabling conversion tracking is also the first step toward using two products which let you bid directly using Cost Per Action (CPA) bidding: the Conversion Optimizer beta and Pay-Per-Action (PPA) beta. These products may make it easier to reach your ROI targets, as well as help you to spend both your time and your advertising dollars more effectively.

Notes: for when you have ROI-negative keywords.

I don't say that you should definitely decrease bids for ROI-negative keywords, because it is also important to factor in the lifetime value of a customer. Also, a keyword may have been used in combination with other keywords before leading to a conversion.

The lifetime value of a customer is probably greater than the one-time conversion event. For example, if you're selling flowers, it's quite likely the customer may buy flowers annually for every birthday or anniversary. If you factor this in, the customer may be worth far more than the profit you make on their first purchase.

There is also the possibility that some of your keywords are used while customers are comparison shopping, and once they've made up their mind, they find your site again using another keyword. For example, if someone searches for "flowers", they may just be researching their options. Once they know what type of flowers they want, they may do another more specific query such as "buy red roses". If this happens, the conversion will only be assigned to the last keyword they used and you may want to keep the more general keyword to ensure potential buyers are aware of your site early in the purchase cycle.

This concludes Fred's ROI series, which we hope will help you improve your advertising results. Should you have any unanswered questions, or if there are particular areas you'd like to see covered in more detail, please let us know. We'd be pleased to invite Fred back for more posts in the near future.



URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2007/10/roi-why-it-matters-and-how-to-track-it.html

[G] Got a blog? Help a student.

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Official Google Blog: Got a blog? Help a student.



When it comes to philanthropy, everyone's got something different to give – some people have money, others have time, and bloggers have devoted readers. The creative folks at DonorsChoose have a few ideas about how bloggers can help students and teachers.

In case you're not familiar with DonorsChoose, it's a site where teachers post needs they have for their classrooms, and donors fund those projects directly. If you've got a blog, a website, or even an email account, you can help by creating what's called a challenge. Just pick some of your favorite projects and challenge your family, friends, and readers to fund them. If you've got a Blogger account, it's easy to add your challenge to your blog in just a few clicks.

To support their recent expansion to schools all across the U.S., the DonorsChoose team is holding a little competition, keeping track of which bloggers and webmasters drive the most funding to schools.

We think this is a cool idea, so we want to help it succeed. We're going to reward the winning bloggers with exactly what they gave to DonorsChoose, students, and teachers: traffic. The competition will remain open until the end of October - we'll then take a look to see who has helped raise the most money in each of the eight DonorsChoose challenge categories. We'll post links to the winners' blogs here, and we'll also throw in a $500 gift certificate for each winner to spend on DonorsChoose.

So here's our challenge to you: go create a challenge on DonorsChoose.

URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2007/10/got-blog-help-student.html

[G] International Cleanup Weekend: Think globally, clean locally

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Official Google Blog: International Cleanup Weekend: Think globally, clean locally



On October 13th and 14th, Googlers and many people around the world will head out to clean up local parks, beaches, trails and other places close to home. We'll be planning our cleanups using Google Maps and sharing our plans with friends and families, along with an invitation to help. So far, Googlers have sent in almost 100 cleanup maps and proposed plans, and have invited more than 900 of their personal contacts to help.

And since many small cleanups add up to one big impact, we hope you'll join in tool. It takes just a few minutes to plan your own cleanup, make a map of it, and send your map to us -- we'll add it to a growing map of all the cleanups around the world. If you keep your cleanup small (groups of 6-10 people work best) and close to home, it'll be easy to organize and you can be sure that you're doing what's most important for your neighborhood. After your cleanup, share your work with the world by posting photos and videos to your map.

If you'd like to join this global effort, you can get started here.

URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2007/10/international-cleanup-weekend-think.html